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Oak Processionary imago, Heesch, Netherlands This photo is the result of Lisa and Christine putting in motion Moth Week. For the first time, it made me try out a little moth trapping exercise in the garden. An extremely simple setup: white blanket sheet on the wall, illuminated with a strong light. <br />
<br />
My expectations were low. Because the area we live in has many light sources, our garden being small and fully renewed this spring, and very likely I&#039;m using the wrong light (I&#039;ve read success rate dramatically increases with light of a specific wavelength that more closely resembles that of the sun). <br />
<br />
I had a spectacular start. First, I duck-taped the sheet to the wall, but it kept collapsing. Then I used screws to hold it in place. When trying to hang the light on one of the screws, I dropped it, and I cut my thumb on the shatters. Replacing the light bulb after the bleeding, it started to rain. We&#039;ve had a record breaking drought for 2 months, yet at this very moment it started raining, endangering this open electricity that includes a very hot lamp.<br />
<br />
Persisting some more, the rain was gone, and the second I turned on the light and turned of all other lights, immediately this one appears. The morning after, only now do I realize its the infamous Oak Processionary in its adult form. The caterpillar of this moth is considered a severe pest to people, and as soon as they are found, the tree is treated with a fluid poisonous only to this species. Furthermore, blue tit birds, which we have a lot of around the garden, deliver biological pest control.<br />
<br />
Somehow this individual survived all that and made it to adulthood. I respect that. On the light:<br />
<figure class="photo"><a href="https://www.jungledragon.com/image/63377/oak_processionary_imago_-_front_view_heesch_netherlands.html" title="Oak Processionary imago - front view, Heesch, Netherlands"><img src="https://s3.amazonaws.com/media.jungledragon.com/images/2/63377_thumb.jpg?AWSAccessKeyId=05GMT0V3GWVNE7GGM1R2&Expires=1578528010&Signature=ta6RRmb8zA5NfteWjx94BSV7FUU%3D" width="200" height="184" alt="Oak Processionary imago - front view, Heesch, Netherlands Front view of the imago of an Oak Processionary moth. Here it is hanging on the steel cage that holds the light I used to attract moths. The light is an old fashioned construction light which is normally used to light up construction sites, for example to continue painting a wall after sunset. There&#039;s a 75W light in it which runs very hot. <br />
<br />
I&#039;m not really sure if this is a good or bad thing regarding moths. This one seemed to like it though. On the window:<br />
https://www.jungledragon.com/image/63356/oak_processionary_imago_heesch_netherlands.html<br />
On cloth:<br />
<br />
https://www.jungledragon.com/image/63375/oak_processionary_imago_-_top_view_heesch_netherlands.html Europe,Heesch,Moth Week 2018,Moths,Netherlands,Oak Processionary,Thaumetopoea processionea" /></a></figure> Europe,Heesch,Moth Week 2018,Moths,Netherlands,Oak Processionary,Thaumetopoea processionea Click/tap to enlarge Promoted

Oak Processionary imago, Heesch, Netherlands

This photo is the result of Lisa and Christine putting in motion Moth Week. For the first time, it made me try out a little moth trapping exercise in the garden. An extremely simple setup: white blanket sheet on the wall, illuminated with a strong light.

My expectations were low. Because the area we live in has many light sources, our garden being small and fully renewed this spring, and very likely I'm using the wrong light (I've read success rate dramatically increases with light of a specific wavelength that more closely resembles that of the sun).

I had a spectacular start. First, I duck-taped the sheet to the wall, but it kept collapsing. Then I used screws to hold it in place. When trying to hang the light on one of the screws, I dropped it, and I cut my thumb on the shatters. Replacing the light bulb after the bleeding, it started to rain. We've had a record breaking drought for 2 months, yet at this very moment it started raining, endangering this open electricity that includes a very hot lamp.

Persisting some more, the rain was gone, and the second I turned on the light and turned of all other lights, immediately this one appears. The morning after, only now do I realize its the infamous Oak Processionary in its adult form. The caterpillar of this moth is considered a severe pest to people, and as soon as they are found, the tree is treated with a fluid poisonous only to this species. Furthermore, blue tit birds, which we have a lot of around the garden, deliver biological pest control.

Somehow this individual survived all that and made it to adulthood. I respect that. On the light:

Oak Processionary imago - front view, Heesch, Netherlands Front view of the imago of an Oak Processionary moth. Here it is hanging on the steel cage that holds the light I used to attract moths. The light is an old fashioned construction light which is normally used to light up construction sites, for example to continue painting a wall after sunset. There's a 75W light in it which runs very hot. <br />
<br />
I'm not really sure if this is a good or bad thing regarding moths. This one seemed to like it though. On the window:<br />
https://www.jungledragon.com/image/63356/oak_processionary_imago_heesch_netherlands.html<br />
On cloth:<br />
<br />
https://www.jungledragon.com/image/63375/oak_processionary_imago_-_top_view_heesch_netherlands.html Europe,Heesch,Moth Week 2018,Moths,Netherlands,Oak Processionary,Thaumetopoea processionea

    comments (9)

  1. What a beauty! Posted one year ago
    1. Thanks so much, Jivko! Another way to look at them, as so many photos focus on the harmful caterpillars and how to kill them.

      So...any plans to do a trap this week? Or still bad weather?
      Posted one year ago
      1. I made during the night. But as we live on the 7th floor, I made it on the balcony. But without success. Shall do it again this night. Let's hope.... Posted one year ago
        1. Didn't know you lived this high up. I imagine there's a lot of competition for light sources, so can imagine the difficulty. But you never know, thanks for trying! Posted one year ago
  2. What a beauty! Great shot, and a very crazy adventure getting everything set up. We are expecting rain tonight, but I'm still going to go out and see what I can see :) Posted one year ago
    1. Thanks!

      Hardcore you are! Good luck, Christine!
      Posted one year ago
      1. ;) Posted one year ago
  3. So pretty! Is it just me, or does it kind of look like a little goat? Posted one year ago
    1. It sure has a goat's appetite :) Posted one year ago

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The Oak Processionary is a moth whose caterpillars are pests in oak forests and pose a health hazard because of their poisonous setae , which may cause skin irritation and asthma.

Similar species: Moths And Butterflies
Species identified by Ferdy Christant
View Ferdy Christant's profile

By Ferdy Christant

All rights reserved
Uploaded Jul 21, 2018. Captured Jul 21, 2018 00:52.
  • NIKON D850
  • f/16.0
  • 1/60s
  • ISO64
  • 105mm